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178 posts categorized "Global Hunger"
The world's poorest citizens are steadily moving into the global “middle class,” according to the recently released 2013 Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI). The report, an Oxford University poverty and human development initiative, predicts that countries among the most impoverished in the world could eradicate acute poverty within 20 years if they continue at present rates. Their tool for measurement, the MPI, is not only significant for its promising economic forecast, but for its groundbreaking multifaceted method of defining true poverty.
In recent years, especially since the launch of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2000, economists and development experts have learned to expand their concept of development to encompass far more than traditional economic yardsticks such as GDP or income per capita. They've discovered that it is really about a human being’s quality of life, an appropriately more complex concept. In previous posts, we have discussed the ingenuity of new tools like the Human Development Index (HDI), which now help us more accurately track the many ways in which human beings can improve their livelihoods. Just as the HDI has redefined the end goal, which is development, the MPI has redefined one of the most urgent barriers — poverty.
The MPI uses 10 key indicators that complement traditional income-based poverty measures by capturing a number of severe deprivations that a person faces simultaneously. The result is a more complete poverty measurement that can identify the poorest among the poor and direct aid resources to them accordingly.
Perhaps the most encouraging outcome of the MPI, as the 2013 report shows, is that it is uncovering progress previously less visible in even the world's “poorest” nations. Read more about the MPI and its impact on the effort to end poverty and hunger in chapter 1 of the 2013 Hunger Report, Within Reach: Global Development Goals.
At Bread for the World Institute, we look closely at the causes of hunger so that we can recommend effective responses. Some causes are apparent –- for example, poverty and armed conflict. Others may be less obvious but nonetheless important. One of the latter is gender-based violence.
All over the world, violence and the threat of violence limit women’s freedom of movement and economic opportunities. Whether a woman must leave her market kiosk early to avoid groups of men out for the evening, flee her home with only the clothes she’s wearing to escape domestic abuse, or pass up the chance for higher education because it would mean traveling alone to classes and risking assault or worse -- gender-based violence makes it harder for women to feed themselves and their children.
In December 2012, India made global headlines because of a brutal gang rape on a public bus, the resulting mass protests in New Delhi and other cities, and even more widespread demonstrations when the victim died days later. On the other hand, India is also the birthplace of the "Ring the Bell" campaign – a male-led effort, active for five years now, that encourages men to step forward to help end gender-based violence. “Ringing the bell” is a simple action that men are urged to take whenever they hear or witness violence against women: ring the doorbell. In other words, interrupt the assault -- on any pretext, however flimsy. Let the man know that other men in his community are willing to intervene to stop gender-based violence. The idea is basic, but it has profound implications. It seeks to "make what was once acceptable unacceptable."
Since 2008, the original Hindi-language campaign, Bell Bajao, has reached more than 130 million people in India via TV and radio ads that explain why gender-based violence cannot be tolerated and how to help stop it. The campaign points out: "For domestic violence to stop, men who are violent must be empowered to make different choices." Each year, “video buses” air short videos featuring true stories of men who took action based on Bell Bajao's message. The buses travel thousands of miles, reaching people village by village. The Bell Bajao campaign has been featured in the storylines of India's leading soap operas and included in national quiz shows – just two among many signs of rising public awareness.
Ring the Bell's core theme will sound familiar to Bread members: it's the power of one individual, committed to taking
action, to create change. Ring the Bell offers suggestions for actions, a variety of ways an individual can pledge to make a difference. For example: teach boys who look up to you that strong men
respect women; intervene to stop any abuse you hear of in your neighborhood and extended family; donate time or resources to a shelter for
rape survivors or battered wives.
On International Women’s Day 2013 (March 8), Ring the Bell became a global campaign. U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is its inaugural Global Champion, while the Clinton Global Initiative is providing financial support. The goal: to get 1 million men to make 1 million promises to take action against gender-based violence by March 2014.
Here's one of the key reasons that broad social change through campaigns such as Ring the Bell must accompany better laws and stronger enforcement of those laws: Globally, the single strongest predictor of a man’s violence against a partner is having witnessed violence during childhood against his mother. (Source: U.N. Women). It's a cycle that must be interrupted one family, village, and town at a time.
Among the many benefits of reducing gender-based violence will be more food grown and more income earned by women -- simply because they can go to school, work, and raise their children in greater peace.
Ring the Bell is a project of Breakthrough TV. Banner above courtesy Breakthrough TV.
Michele Learner is associate editor for Bread for the World Institute.
Precise, complete, and up-to-date data. Everyone working on hunger policy knows how important it is. In fact, access to it would be a dream come true. Instead of wishing after the fact that we could have done more to prevent or at least mitigate hunger crises large and small, chronic malnutrition in the 1,000-day window before a child’s second birthday, and the micronutrient deficiencies that cause conditions such as rickets and intellectual disabilities, we would have the information available in time to “do something.”
We’re getting closer to that dream, thanks to ever-expanding global networks and the rapid progress of real-time communication technologies. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), arguably the most comprehensive and reliable source of international hunger and food security data, has just unveiled a promising new hunger tracking tool — perhaps its first true hunger tracking tool — which uses the new technology to speed up the collection of accurate data. FAO calls it the Voices of the Hungry Project. The name fits, since the goal is to lend a far more sensitive and responsive ear to people living with hunger.
Even at FAO, existing hunger data collection and analysis methods take as long as two or three years to bring accurate data from its source to world attention. By then it is often too late to respond effectively. Most FAO food consumption surveys are administered only every five years, and they don’t always include individual-level responses.
Twitter was all abuzz over FAO's new tool. Bread for the World Institute was talking about it too.
The Voices of the Hungry Project will select representative samples of 1,000 to 5,000 people per country, depending on the national population. Individuals will be asked to answer eight questions to gauge the depth and frequency of any food insecurity they experienced in the previous year. More specifically, the questions measure whether respondents are experiencing mild, moderate, or severe food insecurity on a “Food Insecurity Experience Scale.”
Respondents are asked to indicate whether, in the past 12 months, there was a time when, because of lack of money or other resources:
1. You were worried you would run out of food.
2. You were unable to eat healthy and nutritious food.
3. You ate only a few kinds of foods.
4. You had to skip a meal.
5. You ate less than you thought you should.
6. Your household ran out of food.
7. You were hungry but did not eat.
8. You went without eating for a whole day.
The survey results will be available in days rather than years, allowing FAO to take an almost real-time snapshot of a nation's food security situation.
Chapter 1 of Bread for the World Institute’s 2013 Hunger Report delineates the high costs of delayed data collection. It tells the story of FAO’s struggle to accurately track rising hunger and food insecurity during and after the food price crisis of 2008-2009. The data was not made available until a year or more after the crisis began. Moreover, some of it was later discovered to be significantly inaccurate.
The effectiveness of nutrition programs, the credibility of statements about progress or lack of progress on hunger, and the integrity of broader development initiatives such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) depend on reliable data. Measurable, accurate results provide the crucial backing to show whether a proposed solution is likely to work. FAO’s Voices of the Hungry Project will help get the facts about who is hungry out in a faster, more accurate way.
more about the food price crisis of 2008-2009, changing data collection
methods, and the MDGs in chapter one of the 2013 Hunger Report, Within Reach:
Global Development Goals.
Although each of the U.N. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is important, some include more specifics than others. MDG 3 is to "promote gender equality" -- quite a sweeping task-- but its specific targets and indicators focus mainly on gender parity in education (at all levels -- primary, secondary, and tertiary) and a related indicator, the ratio of literate women to men in the age group 15 to 24. It's clear that education for girls is critically important and leads to improvements both in women's own lives and those of their children. By itself, though, gender parity in education is not enough to achieve gender equality.
Yet gender equality is not only a core development objective, it is also smart economics. Empowered women and men can improve a society's productivity, offer their children greater opportunities, and make institutions more representative. It benefits everyone.
Bread for the World Institute's 2013 Hunger Report, Within Reach: Global Development Goals emphasizes both the intrinsic value and instrumental value of gender equality. Today, we know that removing barriers that prevent women from having the same access as men to education, economic opportunities, and productive inputs can generate broad based productivity gains -- gains all the more important in an increasingly competitive society. Additionally, leveling the playing field so that women and men have equal chances to actively engage socially and politically -- to make decisions and shape policies -- is likely to lead over time to more representative, and more inclusive institutions and policy responses.
Staggering evidence based on the upcoming 2012 Global Food Policy Report of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) reveals that almost 55 percent of the reduction in hunger from 1970 to 1995 can be attributed to improvements in women’s status in society. Additionally, it is estimated that global malnutrition could be reduced by 12 percent to 17 percent if gender barriers were eliminated and women farmers were able to match the yields of male farmers.
It is true that the lives of girls and women have changed dramatically over the past 50 years. While the pace of change has been astonishing in some areas, in other areas, progress toward gender equality has been limited — even in developed countries.
What is also becoming increasingly clear is that income growth by itself does not deliver greater gender equality on all fronts. In fact, where gender gaps have closed quickly, it is because of how institutions and markets — both formal and informal—have functioned and evolved, how growth has played out, and how all these factors have interacted through household decisions. For example, how has the global progress in girls' education come about? A combination of factors -- income growth (which loosens budget constraints), markets (which open new employment opportunities for women), and formal institutions (which expand school systems and lower costs) -- came together in a broad range of countries to influence household decisions in favor of educating girls and young women.
So is women's empowerment important? Yes -- in order to achieve the MDGs, we must redouble our commitment to support women and girls in achieving their full potential. We need to prioritize MDG 3 alongside the other seven goals.
Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do-- Johann Wolfgang
International Women’s Day on March 8 kicked off a conversation about the progress being made in improving nutrition among vulnerable groups such as pregnant women and young children. For good reason, much of the U.S. development assistance for nutrition is focused on the 1,000-day “window of opportunity” from a woman’s pregnancy to her child’s second birthday. Improvements in nutrition during this period can benefit children for a lifetime.
But “breaking the cycle” of poverty, hunger, and malnutrition is difficult for structural, economic, political, and social reasons. Poorly nourished women are more likely to give birth to low birth weight babies who often do less well in school and suffer lifelong health problems. The cycle continues when this generation has its own babies, particularly among girls who give birth when they are still at too young an age. In many countries this cycle has continued for generations, especially among vulnerable groups such as ethnic minorities and those who live in remote, hard to reach areas. During my visit last year to Bangladesh, I saw some of these problems but I also noticed signs that the situation is improving. Two factors that are helping are better educational opportunities for girls and women, and a trend toward smaller families. Fewer children generally means more food and better nutrition – it’s more likely that there will be enough food left over for a youngest daughter, even in cultures where men, boys, and older girls eat first.
In South Asia, many women and girls are chronically ill due to a lack of proper nutrition. There are several contributing factors: poverty; lack of proper health care; malnutrition early in life, which leaves its survivors more susceptible to disease; lack of nutritional knowledge; and patriarchal family structures that may relegate girls and women to eating only whatever is left over or primarily less nutritious foods. Ambassador David Lane, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Agencies for Food and Agriculture, recently mentioned the “3 A’s” that affect both the quantity and quality of food consumption. These are availability of a nutritious and diverse supply of food, access to it (it’s better not to be that youngest daughter), and absorption of vitamins and minerals. He called for a multisectoral strategy to find solutions in these three areas.
The impact of all the various factors that make young women likely to be malnourished and chronically ill come to a head during pregnancy -- one of the most vulnerable times in a person’s life. About 60 percent of South Asian women in their childbearing years are underweight due partly to a lack of proper nutrition during their own childhoods. Also, eight out of 10 South Asian women are anemic (lack iron) during pregnancy, and many suffer from chronic energy deficit (lack of sufficient calories).
A lack of adequate nutritional knowledge is a big contributor to malnutrition, carrying with it the risk of improper cooking methods, poor hygiene, and too little variety in the diet. Also a major contributor is a lack of resources to prepare food using safe water and to purchase and consume a variety of fruits, vegetables, and protein-rich foods. Development assistance programs that recognize the important role of nutrition in various sectors, such as agriculture, health, and gender, offer countries an opportunity to educate families so that the cycle of malnutrition can be broken rather than repeated.
Welcome to week two of our blog-wide celebration of women’s history month and International Women’s Day (#IWD)! In the past week, we’ve done our best to highlight a few (of many) ways that women uphold societies and propel economies forward, while pointing to some of the (also many) areas where inequality persists. One of the most basic of these is getting access to nutritious food.
If you have visited this blog or skimmed our twitter feed at any point in the last year, you will have had to work very hard to avoid terms such as severe acute malnutrition (SAM), the 1,000 Days, and stunting. It’s no secret that a concern with nutrition – the quality of food — needs to accompany any focus on food access and food security. As we’ve mentioned before — often – it’s not just about food, but about good quality, well timed, locally sourced, and sustainably produced food.
Today we add another layer — equally accessible food. If we had a Venn diagram with overlapping circles for hunger and gender equality, the overlap would be equally accessible food. As I said in last week’s Hunger Report Monday, there are many reasons that women in much of the developing world are far more likely to go hungry than men are. This inequity is especially unnerving considering the direct link between the health of a mother and the prospect of a healthy start for her children.
The 1,000-day window from pregnancy to age 2 is critical to physical and cognitive development. The health and well-being of a child younger than 2 rests almost entirely in the hands of her mother, and an inability to provide the right nutrients can result in lasting damage to both brain and body.
If a woman was undernourished as a child, her own children are far more likely to suffer the same fate. Put more positively, the past two generations of progress against hunger have put women today in a strong position to end the cycle of malnutrition and stunting. But significant social change will be needed for large numbers of women to be able to accomplish this for their families.
Farmers such as this Zambian worker feed most people in the developing world. Photo by Margaret W. Nea for Bread for the World.
International Women's Day is coming right up: this Friday, March 8.
Of course, every other day of the year is also women's day, just as every day is men's day and children's day. Yet sometimes even seasoned advocates who approach hunger holistically -- recognizing it as the multidimensional problem it is -- are guilty of putting "gender" or "women's issues" in a separate box from other development sectors.
Granted, it's an important box, increasingly stuffed with worthwhile things -- the 1,000 Days campaign to prevent malnutrition among pregnant women and young children, literacy and bookkeeping classes for small business owners, campaigns against child marriage and maternal mortality, and many more. But nonetheless, it's a box.
Female farmers produce well over half of all the food grown in the world, and worldwide, the major responsibility for providing for families falls to women. But few female farmers own the land they work, have the authority to make decisions about crops and livestock, or control their own incomes. The box separates these "women's empowerment" issues from other parts of the solution to hunger, such as agriculture. Sure, there are programs for "women farmers," but this is often viewed as a matter of equal opportunity. Crop research, extension services, training in newer or more productive growing and harvesting methods, and a host of other agricultural programs are for "farmers." We don't see a term such as "men farmers" very often -- because the pervasive assumption is that "farmers" are men.
It's an assumption that can literally be seen in fields around the world, reflected in a basic hand tool: the hoe. As it turns out, women work more effectively with hoes that are not only lighter weight, but have longer handles than those intended for “everyone.” But these are in short supply.
It's an assumption that costs the world dearly -- in hunger, malnutrition, and all their consequences. The Institute's new resource, "Development Works: Myths and Realities," points out that according to the 2012 Africa Human Development Report, gender bias is a "principal cause" of hunger in Africa. A principal cause of hunger -- not something that has solutions separate from sectors such as agriculture.
Yesterday, Olivier de Schutter, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, released a report on women's rights and the right to food. He points out in "The Feminization of Farming," in The New York Times of March 3, that women have a heavy burden of unpaid work -- cooking, cleaning, child care, fetching water, etc., that "result in lost opportunities for women, who don’t have the time to attend classes, travel to markets to sell produce, or do other activities to improve their economic prospects."
De Schutter sums up his argument: "The most effective strategies to empower women who tend farm and family — and to alleviate hunger in the process — are to remove the obstacles that hinder them from taking charge of their lives."
That's what International Women's Day is all about. And that's why we can't view gender and agriculture as separate but equal spheres.Michele Learner is associate editor for Bread for the World Institute.
Here at Bread for the World Institute, we often talk about hunger and poverty as root causes of other social ills. When people don’t have enough money or food, they will take desperate actions they wouldn’t otherwise consider – such as crossing borders illegally, resorting to theft or violence, or no longer providing one or more of their children with an education or even adequate food. Dire necessity brings out the worst in people.
Among U.S. social justice advocates in the 21st century, one particular result of the desperation caused by hunger and poverty has been in the limelight. As evidenced by U.N. initiatives, recent mention by President Obama, and a proliferation of new NGOs, human trafficking — often called modern slavery — has shocked and fascinated people of faith and conscience. The reality that 27 million people are enslaved in 2013 is — and should be — hard to ignore.
In his book Disposable People, the co-founder of Free the Slaves, Kevin Bales, examines the convergence of factors that produced modern slavery and sustains it today. Three major causes are:
- the population explosion of the past three decades, which has flooded the world's labor markets with millions of impoverished, desperate people;
- a revolution in economic globalization and modernized agriculture that has dispossessed many poor farmers and forced them into debt, making them and their families particularly vulnerable to enslavement; and
- rapid economic change that has bred corruption and violence and destroyed social norms that might once have protected the most vulnerable individuals.
Each of Bales’ three factors points a finger at policy failures, macroeconomic shifts, and the widespread poverty that the two combined now allow to continue. The plain fact is that millions of people live in extreme poverty – conditions that leave them with very few options. Sometimes there are only two: enslavement or starvation.
The work of trafficking-focused initiatives and organizations is much needed. Advocates have exposed the blatant violation of human rights that is present-day slavery – a problem that has remained in the shadows far too long. Their faithful efforts are making legal history in countries around the world (just read the stories). But even as these necessary battles continue, so too must the greater war on the root causes that poverty, hunger, and modern slavery have in common.
In the 2013 Hunger Report, Within Reach: Global Development Goals, we celebrate the exciting successes credited to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), arguably the most unified global development initiative in human history. None of the eight MDGs talk specifically about modern slavery. While this may suggest a historical blind spot for the nearly expired goals, the omission makes sense because the MDGs were made to target prerequisites. Ending hunger and extreme poverty, as well as promoting inclusive economic growth and accountability, are essential to creating opportunities for poor families that enable them to avoid debt and servitude. The MDGs also support the necessary stable legal systems that can effectively prosecute traffickers. Working to eradicate extreme poverty will not free those in slavery today (and for this reason, we support the work of anti-trafficking advocates), but it is necessary if millions of people will have alternatives to enslavement tomorrow.
Explore the 2013 Hunger Report to learn more about the importance of poverty-focused development and MDGs such as universal primary education, gender equality, environmental sustainability, and foreign aid. They are the foundations of the solutions to shocking and dramatic problems such as slavery.
Posted by Bread on February 26, 2013 in Africa, Agriculture, Asia, Assets for the Poor, Development Assistance, Economic Development, Food Prices, Global Hunger, Good Governance, Hunger Report, Immigration, Inequality, Malnutrition, Millennium Development Goals, Trade, Weblogs | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
A veritable “who’s who” of the nutrition community recently gathered in Washington, DC, for a World Bank-sponsored event, Nutrition in the Post-2015 Development Agenda. Global policy and advocacy experts discussed the importance of nutrition in the successor framework to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – more specifically, how to connect the technical aspects of nutrition and development with the political and practical “in order to come up with concrete and actionable principles and recommendations.”
Why this high-level discussion of nutrition, and why now? Nutrition is a key component of reaching MDG 1 (reduce hunger and extreme poverty by half). It’s critical to nearly all the other goals as well. As 2015, the expiration date of the original MDGs, approaches, there's a lot of buzz about post-2015 global development goals. That’s why now is the best opportunity to strengthen nutrition’s place in the existing goals and/ or to come up with a new goal that recognizes the foundational role of nutrition to a range of development goals.
With more than 2 billion people around the world suffering from malnutrition (including more than 865 million children), we have a long way to go to create the future we believe in: one in which everyone, but especially women of reproductive age and children, has access to adequate nutritious food. According to the chair of the U.N.’s Standing Committee on Nutrition, the so-called “burden of malnutrition” takes three forms: undernutrition, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and obesity. We need to focus urgently on easing this burden..
There is a growing consensus that combating stunting in children (measured by significant deviation from the expected height for a child’s age) should be the highest priority. Reducing stunting is one of the six global targets endorsed by the World Health Assembly in 2012, which suggested a goal of reducing the number of children under age 5 who are stunted by 40 percent by 2022. This would translate to 40 million fewer stunted kids than there would otherwise be.
Photo credit: scalingupnutrition.org UNICEF/NYHQ2008-1279/Josh Estey
Why stop at a 40percent reduction? Is a goal of zero stunting in children attainable? FAO Director-General Graziano da Silva, in his guidance on ensuring that eradicating hunger and malnutrition and building food security remain high priorities in the post-2015 development framework, urged the international community to commit to “the complete eradication of hunger” in setting country priorities. This follows U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s Zero Hunger Challenge, which was announced in June 2012 at the Rio+20 Sustainable Development Conference.
Also recently, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) issued a position paper entitled “A World Free from Hunger and Malnutrition” that calls for zero stunting to be considered “a new benchmark for global development success.” GAIN is a global foundation that assists nearly 670 million people facing malnutrition in more than 30 countries. In recommending that nutrition be at the heart of the post-2015 development framework, GAIN emphasizes that stunting strongly correlates with development -- what happens on stunting offers a good measure of progress on a range of other development objectives. Reaching the specific deliverable goal of zero stunting would be the best indicator that the world’s children are getting the right start in life.
The critical importance of nutrition across nearly all development sectors is being recognized. Global momentum on improving nutrition is growing, especially in the countries most burdened by malnutrition and stunting. Consensus among nutrition experts on the importance of stunting as a nutrition indicator has been reached. What is left is the need to communicate one message to global political leaders in a powerful, unified, and simple way: improving nutrition is key to ending hunger in our lifetime.
Posted by Scott Bleggi on February 25, 2013 in Africa, Agriculture, Asia, Climate Change, Development Assistance, Economic Development, Food Aid, Food Prices, Foreign Aid Reform, Global Hunger, Good Governance, Hunger Hotspots, Hunger Report, Latin America, Malnutrition, Maternal and Child Nutrition, Millennium Development Goals, Weblogs | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
On February 11, Senator Christopher Coons (D-DE) treated his constituents yet again to his annual Opportunity: Africa Conference. The half-day conference looked at how Delaware’s businesses, faith communities, and individuals can engage in Africa amid the opportunities and challenges on the continent. The residents of Delaware had the opportunity to interract with some of the nation’s leading voices on sustainable development issues- food security and nutrition, child health and trade in Africa.
Africa today offers the promise for a return on investments. During the previous decade (2001-2010), six of the world’s 10 fastest-growing economies were in Africa. The continent has shown consistent growth, a trend that is expected to continue. A number of factors account for this growth, including technological innovations, political stability, trade, and investment. Robust growth rates, a new commitment to health and agriculture, and significant advances in science and technology are creating new investment opportunities. The United States has played a role in this progress. Senator Coons reminded participants that through life-changing assistance programs such as the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), for example, HIV/AIDS infections have significantly declined in Africa.
But challenges remain. Today, half the population in sub-Saharan Africa (an estimated 400 million people) live on less than $1.25 a day. We know that the main driver of poverty reduction in the world is the hard work of poor people themselves. Given the opportunity to improve their communities and provide a better life for their children, they seize it. It is this recognition that makes Senator Coons a champion for foreign assistance. As Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs, Coons echoes President Obama’s view that a strong foreign policy rooted in American values must aim to promote democracy and freedom, protect human rights, defend U.S. interests abroad, while also increasing U.S. investment and trade through mutual partnerships. He stresed that today more than ever, development assistance is critical in reducing poverty and bringing greater stability to our interconnected world.
This conference gave Bread for the World the opportunity to remind participants that moving the aid effectiveness agenda to achieve the MDGs is a complex task, but a necessary one. While more work lies ahead, efforts to achieve the MDGs have already saved lives, helped to lift millions of people out of poverty, and ensured that more children attend school. By investing in local capacity and building strong institutions and infrastructure, U.S. development assistance can help promote good governance, stability, and prosperity. Even as difficult fiscal choices are before Congress, Bread for the World maintains that U.S decision makers should lead the way by protecting and speaking out for investments that build resilience in communities. Making resources available through well-planned programs such as Feed the Future will enable African countries to develop their agricultural infrastructure in sustainable ways and diversify their economies. The 1,000 Days initiative takes advantage of a unique window of opportunity – the 1,000 days between pregnancy and a child’s second birthday – to create a healthier future for an entire generation. This is because the right nutrition during this period is critical to a child’s ability to grow, learn, and ultimately rise out of poverty.
In his keynote address, Kenyan Ambassador to the U.S, His Excellency Elkanah Odembo also urged that U.S. leadership and commitment to Africa’s development are necessary and that the recent gains on the continent be supported and sustained. The Ambassador stressed that at a time of intense debate over budget cuts, it is helpful to remember that not only do investments save lives, improve livelihoods and promote stability- they also save money in the long run and create markets for local communities as well as strong trading partners for the U.S market. Partnering for development, he noted- would help to identify common ground between different actors and to combine their skills, resources and expertise and engage in win–win relationships around development objectives such as food security, poverty reduction, health, education and access to opportunities.
Sustaining this commitment and others like it, is what will create the future we want for all—a future grounded in prosperity, dignity and mutual respect.
Posted by Faustine Wabwire on February 22, 2013 in Africa, Agriculture, Assets for the Poor, Climate Change, Development Assistance, Economic Development, Food Prices, Foreign Aid Reform, Global Hunger, Good Governance, Malnutrition, Maternal and Child Nutrition, Millennium Challenge Account, Millennium Development Goals | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)